Back to All Events

Nicole Sealey and Layla Benitez-James

  • The Betsy South Beach 1440 Ocean Drive Miami Beach, FL, 33139 United States (map)

U.S. Poet Laureate Tracy K. Smith calls Nicole Sealey "a poet for the ages."

Hear Sealey read from her debut collection, Ordinary Beast (ECCO, 2017), a finalist for the 2018 PEN Open Book Award.

Then celebrate with O, Miami, The Betsy, and Cave Canem as we welcome Layla Benitez-James, winner of the annual Toi Derricotte and Cornelius Eady Chapbook Prize.

Her manuscript, God Suspected My Heart Was a Geode But He Had to Make Sure, was selected by Major Jackson and published by Jai-Alai Books. 



Born in St. Thomas, U.S.V.I. and raised in Apopka, Florida, Nicole Sealey is the author of Ordinary Beast, finalist for the 2018 PEN Open Book Award, and The Animal After Whom Other Animals Are Named, winner of the 2015 Drinking Gourd Chapbook Poetry Prize. Nicole holds an MLA in Africana studies from the University of South Florida and an MFA in creative writing from New York University. She is the executive director at Cave Canem Foundation, Inc.


Layla Benitez-James is an artist and translator living in Alicante, Spain and serves as the Director of Literary Outreach for the Unamuno Author Series in Madrid. Her poems and translations have appeared in The Acentos Review, Anomaly, Guernica, Waxwing and elsewhere. Her audio essays about translation can be found at Asymptote Journal Podcast

Earlier Event: April 4
Check Out a Poet (Doral)
Later Event: April 6
Seagrass Adventures